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Renters Insurance and Pet Coverage: What You Need To Know

Renters Insurance and Pet Coverage: What You Need To Know


Even the most cuddly pups and charming cats can wreak havoc in the wrong mood.

According to the American Pet Product Association (APPA), 70% of American households have pets. If you’re one of them, you’re probably accustomed to losing a bit of your security deposit for various damages each time you move.  

You may not know that your renters insurance may cover certain damage caused by pets.

There are a few exceptions to this, so it’s essential to understand how your insurance works with your pets. In this guide, we have covered everything you need to know about renters insurance with pet coverage:

  • What Is Renters Insurance With Pet Coverage?
  • When Does Renters Insurance Cover Pets?
  • How Do I Add a Pet to My Rental Insurance Policy?
  • Renters Insurance for Pets — Exceptions
  • The Goodcover Difference
  • Final Thoughts: Must-Know Facts About Renters Insurance With Pet Coverage

What Is Renters Insurance With Pet Coverage?

Most renters insurance policies cover three things: Damage to your landlord’s property, injury to others, and damage to your property.

For the most part, insurance companies only cover causes they have enough data on to estimate the likelihood of the event.

The good news is: Insurance providers can reasonably estimate pet damage using information like the species, breed, and number of pets.  Besides some aggressive dog breeds, renters insurance with pet coverage covers most pets.

The coverage works almost exactly like the rest of your renters insurance, with one exception: your personal property. Most renters insurance with pet coverage does not cover damage to your property.

When Does Renters Insurance Cover Pets?

Renters insurance covers pet damage when the pet causes harm to your landlord’s or neighbor’s property.

For example, if your cat claws up the baseboards or your dog damages the carpets, your renters insurance may cover those damages up to a certain amount (at Goodcover, this may be up to $1,000) after making a claim and paying your deductible.

Renters insurance with pet liability coverage may also cover the damage if your pet attacks or bites a guest on your property.

While renters insurance covers a few types of damages your pets can cause, it doesn’t cover your pet’s medical expenses (illness or injury).

Renters insurance also doesn’t cover expenses related to a pet dying in your home. That is because the death of a pet isn’t a covered peril.The rationale is that pets aren’t technically personal property. To insure your four-legged fluffball, you’ll need a pet insurance policy.

When Does Renters Insurance for Pets Kick In?

Renters insurance with pet coverage kicks in when your covered pet damages your landlord’s or, if applicable, neighbor’s property.

For example, if your cat claws up the baseboards or your dog damages the carpets, your renters insurance may cover those damages up to a certain amount (at Goodcover, this may be up to $1,000) after making a claim and paying your deductible.

Renters insurance with pet coverage may also cover the damage if your pet attacks or bites a guest on your property.

What Does Pet Insurance Cover?

Pet insurance policies are the way to go if you want more coverage for your furry friend. This policy is similar to health insurance.

It covers part of your pet’s medical bills that result from various causes, including:

  • Common or chronic illnesses
  • Accidents and injuries
  • Hereditary conditions
  • Testing, diagnostics, and procedures
  • Behavioral therapy
Pets and renters insurance — Infographic summarizing what is and isn’t covered.


How Do I Add a Pet to My Rental Insurance Policy?

Contact your insurance agent or company to add a pet to your renters insurance policy. You can also add pets to your rental insurance coverage using your insurance company’s website.

How Much Does Pet Liability for Renters Insurance Cost?

Most renters insurance policies cover pet liability as part of your personal liability coverage.

Goodcover offers three coverage options:

  • Good: $5/month ($100,000 worth of liability coverage)
  • Gooder: $6.59/month ($300,000 worth of liability coverage)Goodest: $8.76/month ($500,000 worth of liability coverage)

Renters Insurance for Pets — Exceptions

Renters insurance covers household pets like dogs, but statistically, certain dogs are much more likely to bite others based on their breed or training, so there are some exclusions. Pit bulls, pit bull terriers, Dobermans, German shepherds, and similar dogs may not receive coverage.

Renters insurance also has exclusions for aggressive dogs, regardless of their breed. So, some insurers may also check your pet’s history before deciding whether to include them in your insurance coverage. You should double-check with your renters insurance company to see if they cover your particular situation.

Moreover, renters insurance with pet coverage only covers your landlord’s property and guests.

So, if your dog bites a guest at your house party, your renters insurance will cover the guest’s medical payments. Or if your cat scratches up the baseboards, your liability policy will cover the property damage.

It does not cover your property or any vet expenses related to your pet. So if your dog chews up your favorite throw pillow, you’ll have to pay from your pocket.

Lastly, renters insurance also typically excludes exotic types of pets, like monkeys.

It’s always a good idea to read through your pet liability insurance for renters policy to see what’s covered. Here’s Goodcover’s sample policy’s section on what breeds are typically excluded:

ALT: Sample renters insurance policy section on the breeds not covered by renters insurance.

Finally, your renters insurance only covers damages up to your personal liability limits. Most renters insurance policies offer a basic coverage of $100,000. However, the average cost of a dog bite claim in 2020 was $50,425, and it can certainly climb higher.

With multiple pets, you should consider raising your coverage above $100,000.

The Goodcover Difference

With your furry friends to consider, you may have difficulty finding the right renters insurance with pet coverage — but Goodcover makes it easy.

Goodcover’s affordable insurance plans start at $5/month, backed by the Goodprice Guarantee — if you find the same coverage at a lower price, we’ll refund your premium.  

If you’re unsure how much coverage you need, Goodcover can help you ensure your coverage is set at just what you need, not a penny more. We’re more than a bot — available by phone, text, or chat to help you figure out the right amount of coverage. If you’re feeling up for it, you can also use our guide to help you figure out how much renters insurance you really need.

Goodcover’s rental insurance plans.

Once you figure out how much insurance you need, you can get a quote in under one minute.  Goodcover uses precise assessments that overcome traditional risk biases — many of which have existed for decades — to ensure we’re not overcharging you. Goodcover then collects Member premiums and takes a flat fee for claims and operating costs.


Annually, Goodcover returns unused funds from premiums to the customer through its Member Dividend if any are available. In 2021, Goodcover returned 1.93% of the collected premiums to its Members.

Simply put: Goodcover is designed with renters in mind. We believe finance should make money helping you, not arbitraging you. That’s the Goodcover difference.

Final Thoughts: What To Know About Renters Insurance With Pet Coverage

Renters insurance often covers damage to your landlord’s property and injury to your guests caused by a non-aggressive pet. Aggressive breeds and damage to your belongings are almost always excluded.

Whatever renters insurance you choose, you should understand your policy and get coverage at a fair price.

With Goodcover, we’re committed to pricing our service fairly, so you pay less than with any competitor.

Switch to fair, modern, and cooperative insurance — get a Goodcover quote.


Note: This post is meant for informational purposes, insurance regulation and coverage specifics vary by location and person. Check your policy for exact coverage information.

For additional questions, reach out to us – we’re happy to help.

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